Melbourne-S and Adelaide-S will lock horns for the second time in Australia T20 League. In a previous meeting, Adelaide edged past the Melbourne-S by 5 wickets.
Match Timings: Jan 15, 1:45 PM IST
The last two editions’ runner-ups, Melbourne-S, may miss the playoffs this season with these poor performances. Since Christmas, Melbourne-S have lost five matches out of six, and it’s a big downfall as they won the first two matches with bash boost point. The green outfit has so many concerns, and they are yet to find a proper team combination. In the previous match, the batting unit let them down, and Adelaide restricted them to 149. Maddinson was the top-scorer with 34-balls 48. Stoinis contributed 47 off 31 balls, but the middle-order failed to live up to the expectations. The skipper also got a golden duck. Bowlers gave a good start with picking three wickets on 65 at the halfway mark. The target was not big, and Adelaide chased down with one over left. Zampa went for just 20 and picked two wickets. The used surface will now help spinners more, and it’s a good sign for Melbourne-S.
The injuries have given a tough time to this side. First Dilbar Hussain and then Coulter Nile – Melbourne-S missed these two pacers who provide early breakthroughs in the powerplay. Haris Rauf is back, but he is off the colors. He tried to trouble Adelaide with extra pace in the last game, and it didn’t work out. He has bowled five overs so far and conceded 58 with an economy of 11.60. Stoinis looked better with the bat, but Maxwell didn’t try him as the bowler. The skipper himself failed with the bat in the last three matches, scoring only 6 runs. Pooran was the big package since his debut match, but he is also inconsistent. Melbourne-S have the match-winners, but they failed collectively. Individual brilliance hurt their campaign.
Meanwhile, Adelaide have an edge for this match after a compelling victory in the first leg game. Alex Carey-led side has a roller-coaster campaign, but the playoff qualification journey looks better considering the current form. Adelaide struggled in the last game in the chase of 150. They scored just 65 in first ten and put pressure on the middle-order. Jonathan Wells scored gritty 36, and Gibson contributed quick 22 to finish the work. The 5-wickets victory at home gave them a boost in the points table. Adelaide have won five matches out of ten, and by adding five bash boost point, Adelaide moved to third in the table. Carey has to keep the momentum high as Adelaide has the same numbers of wins and defeats. They have strong chances to finish in the top two. Rashid Khan will not be available for the rest of the season, and he went to UAE for national duty. The spin option will be affected for Adelaide, but they have to accept it and extend the winning run.
Melbourne’s surface is good for batting, and it provides good assistance to the spin. Batsmen can have the upper hand. Chasing would be the safe call after winning the toss.
Andre Fletcher, Marcus Stoinis, Nick Larkin, Glenn Maxwell (c), Nic Maddinson, Hilton Cartwright, Seb Gotch (wk), Adam Zampa, Sam Rainbird, Liam Hatcher, Haris Rauf
Matt Renshaw, Philip Salt, Alex Carey (c & wk), Jonathan Wells, Jake Weatherald, Ryan Gibson, Connor, Daniel Worrall, Danny Briggs, Wes Agar, Harry Conway
Season so far – M: 8, Runs: 277, Avg: 39.57
Season so far – M: 9, Runs: 255, Avg: 36.42
Season so far – M: 8, Runs: 279, Avg: 34.87
Season so far – M: 8, Wickets: 17, Avg: 16.88